Victorian train passengers have been warned to prepare for long delays, when nine regional and metropolitan railway services will be shut down over three weeks in April.
From April 1 to 23, there will be intermittent shutdowns on the Cranbourne, Pakenham, Frankston, Sandringham, Glen Waverley, Mernda, Gippsland, Geelong and Warrnambool lines, forcing passengers onto replacement bus services.
Premier Daniel Andrews said the closures were unavoidable, and necessary for Metro Tunnel and level crossing removal works.
“If we don't build these projects, we'll have nothing but disruption and chaos into the future,” Mr Andrews said.
Regional passengers on the Gippsland, Geelong and Warrnambool lines will experience delays of up to an hour as a result of the works. Public Transport Minister Melissa Horne said trains would be free to Gippsland during the period, as Gippsland travellers have suffered about 150 days of disruption over the previous year.
Football fans will be among those affected by the closures, with Richmond station to be closed on some game days. During April, the free tram zone will be extended to the MCG to compensate.
All commuters are urged to check their local lines and plan ahead.
For advance notice of disruptions, please visit www.ptv.vic.gov.au/plan/disruptions.